Ralph & Medlock 2014 FamCA 191

A child aged 6 years had very significant disabilities, and the father had spent almost no time with the child in the past 6 years (long absent parent).

The father was critical of the mother’s parenting, but his criticisms were not supported by evidence.

Expert evidence stated unanimously that the child needed stability and predictability, and that the child had experienced significant emotional distress and behavioural disruptions subsequent to an unplanned visit by the father to the child’s school.

The judge ordered that the child live with the mother, the mother have sole parental responsibility for the child and there be no order for time between the child and the father (contact nil).